Dear First Name,
In her recent book, How Change Happens, Georgetown professor Leslie Crutchfield outlines a number of factors that help movements succeed. Key among them are strong and empowered grassroots, telling great stories, reconciling with allies, and finding unusual partners. Reversing climate change will require these disciplines and more.
The Covenant has a great network of grassroots leaders, great stories, amazing allies and unusual partners. But each of us has to be attentive to these key indicators to truly grow a movement. As summer draws to a close, it seems like a really good time for each of us to consider how to be better leaders within our communities. Be inspired by the Covenant’s stories and share you own; reach out to your pastor and your neighbors; give attention to an estranged ally; cultivate an unusual partner. Let’s do all of this so we can live more fully the challenges of caring for our common home.
The Covenant stands ready to help so that, together, we can be far more than a collection of followers; we can become a community of leaders.
Founding Executive Director
Catholic Climate Covenant
Action of the Month
Catholics Are Still In Campaign - Now Open for Institutional and Individual Signatures!
You are amazing! With your support The Catholic Climate Declaration (CCD) now has 679 institutional signatures and 1000 individual signatures. If the leader of your Catholic institution hasn’t signed yet, please encourage them to sign the declaration. All institutions signing by September 1, 2018 will be presented as “Catholics Are Still In” during a faith-based event at the Global Climate Action Summit. Help us present at least 1000 Catholic institutional signatories at the Global Climate Summit. (Signatures are also welcome after September 1, in recognition that some institutions have formal decision-making processes occurring after this date.)
To help you and potential signatories make informed requests and decisions, please check the resources found on our website here. You can also check to see if your diocese, parish, school, or other Catholic institution has already signed.
Individual Signatories: Have YOU signed the Catholic Climate Declaration? We are now accepting individual signatures! Sign here.
Share this link with friends, family, and others in your community and invite them to sign the CCD and to reach out to their bishop, pastor, principal, or other Catholic leader.
Catholics Leading the Way
Vatican Hosts Meetings on Climate Change
The Covenant’s Associate Director, Jose Aguto, was blessed to attend the Vatican's Dicastery for Integral Human Development “Saving Our Common Home” meeting on the July 5-6 . Over 400 global faith leaders, scientists and politicians strategized on how to influence upcoming international meetings that will focus on the urgent need to respond to climate change. The Pope told the audience: “Your presence here is a sign of your commitment to take concrete steps to save the planet and the life it sustains, inspired by the Encyclical’s assumption that ‘everything is connected.” That principle, he said, “lies at the heart of an integral ecology.”
You can watch the opening ceremony and first session here.
Jose was most excited by the conference’s emphasis on youth and indigenous peoples! Be on the lookout for more exciting news from a youth synod and an indigenous peoples’ synod in the near future.
Feast of St. Francis Program
The 2018 Feast of St. Francis educational program is almost ready to be sent out to all who pre-register! Expected date of release: August 15th.
This year’s Feast of St. Francis program: “Who Is My Neighbor in A Climate Threatened World" focuses on the interconnections between immigration, refugees, and climate change. The program includes prayers, readings, a short video, discussion questions, and suggested activities.
Register to receive your program guidehere. Program will be emailed to you around mid-August.
Watch the Feast of St Francis Promo video and start planning your event. Hosting a Feast of St. Francis program is the perfect way to end the Season of Creation with prayer and action!
Season of Creation
The Season of Creation is a worldwide celebration of prayer and action for our common home. The world’s 2.2 billion Christians are invited to pray and act to care for creation. It runs from September 1st (the Day of Prayer for Creation) to October 4th (the Feast of St. Francis).
How can you take part?
Host an educational event! Pray! Take action! A wealth of resources, including 10 event suggestions, an event host checklist, and much more, can be found on the Season of Creation website. Events can be prayer and worship related, educational programs (such as the Feast of St. Francis program), and/or participation in a campaign. Suggested campaigns include a March for the Climate on September 8 (coinciding with the Global Climate Action Summit), a stream or ocean clean-up, or an ecumenical prayer service. Praying together enriches our love for the Creator and all of creation. See a prayer service guide here.
Be sure to register your event to appear on the worldwide event map and receive special resources.
From Declaration to Action: Next Steps for Living the Catholic Climate Declaration Webinar
On August 2nd, the Covenant hosted a webinar to explore how institutions that have signed the Catholic Climate Declaration (CCD) can take the needed actions to implement the principles of the CCD. The webinar included information on the CCD, the upcomingGlobal Climate Summit, Catholic Energies, and how one religious congregation is LivingLaudato Si’. You can watch the webinar recording here.
Faithful Action on Climate Change
Blanket of smoke covering the central valley of California because of wildfires. (Photo credit: Beatriz Flores)
Diocese of Stockton's Environmental Justice Program Responds to Health Effects of Wildfires
(Article submitted by Yolanda Park,Program Manager, Environmental Justice Project, Catholic Charities Diocese of Stockton)
We are witnessing real-life impacts from a warming planet and the havoc it is creating. The northern California wildfires remind us that pollution does not stay in one place. Smoke from several wildfires has pooled into the Central Valley, affecting air quality for what is now going on three weeks. Particulate matter (PM) 2.5, a major cause of adverse health effects, is made of fine inhalable contaminates that combine with liquid droplets in the air. These particles, smaller than the width of a single strand of hair, can enter the bloodstream and cause or worsen susceptibility to stroke, heart attack, and asthma, which can be fatal. The elderly, children, pregnant women, and those with history of respiratory problems are the most vulnerable. The Environmental Justice (EJ) Program at Catholic Charities in the Diocese of Stockton is working to inform people of the health effects of PM 2.5 and the need to remain indoors as much as possible during especially bad air days. The Program acquired three PurpleAir monitors thanks to the generosity of the Coalition for Clean Air. This will allow residents of San Joaquin County to monitor real-time measurements of air quality and make informed decisions based on accurate data. To see if there is an air monitor in your location, go to purpleair.com. The Diocese is also raising funds to assist those affected by fires through special collections during Mass. We pray for all those who are affected by the fires. Remember, if you can smell smoke, you are breathing it!The northern California wildfires remind us that pollution does not stay in one place. Smoke from several wildfires have pooled into the Central Valley, affecting air quality for what is now going on to three weeks. Particulate matter (PM) 2.5, a major cause of adverse health effects, is made of fine inhalable contaminates that combine with liquid droplets in the air. These particles, smaller than the width of a single strand of hair, can enter the bloodstream and cause or worsen susceptibility to stroke, heart attack, and asthma, which can be fatal. The elderly, children, pregnant women, and those with history of respiratory problems are the most vulnerable. The Environmental Justice (EJ) Program at Catholic Charities in the Diocese of Stockton, is working to inform regarding the health effects of PM 2.5 and the need to remain indoors as much as possible during especially bad air days. The Program acquired three PurpleAir monitors thanks to the generosity of the Coalition for Clean Air. This will allow local residents in San Joaquin County to monitor real time measurements of air quality and make informed decisions based on accurate data--to see if there is an air monitor in your location go to purpleair.com. The Diocese is also raising funds to assist those affected by fires through special collections during mass. We pray for all those who are affected by the fires. Remember, if you can smell smoke, you are breathing it!
Sisters of Mercy…on the Forefront of Creation Care
Marianne Comfort, Justice Coordinator for Earth, Anti-Racism, and Women for the Sisters of Mercy of the Americas summarizes the incredibly broad and deep creation-care efforts of the Sisters of Mercy. From a convent entering into a contract to purchase electricity from a community solar farm to a retirement community with vegetation growing on its roof for natural insulation, the Sisters of Mercy are true creation care leaders.
Turning the Message of Laudato Si' into Action-Diocesan Action
Kudos to the Diocese of Salt Lake City as it gears up to form a Creation Care Team to lead their efforts on sustainability and creation care. Read more here.
On our responsibility to Take Care of the Environment, The Truth About Global Warming and How our Decisions Affect God’s Creation
At the invitation of Bishop Kevin C. Rhoades (Diocese of Fort Wayne-South Bend), Dr. Phil Sakimoto—a physicist and sustainability expert and member of the Creation Care Team at St. Pius X in Granger, Indiana—led an educational session on climate change for the priests of the Diocese of Ft Wayne-South Bend (Indiana). This was followed-up for the laity with an interview on the local Catholic radio station. The interview is now available online at http://www.kyleheimann.com/show473/
Covenant partner, The Global Catholic Climate Movement, has several job openings.